City of Lawrence Fair Housing Ordinance 50th Anniversary Oral History Project

Dublin Core

Title

City of Lawrence Fair Housing Ordinance 50th Anniversary Oral History Project

Subject

Discrimination in housing -- Kansas -- Lawrence -- History
African Americans -- Segregation -- Kansas -- Lawrence -- History
Lawrence (Kan.) -- Race relations -- History

Description

On July 18, 1967, Lawrence mayor Richard Raney signed into law Ordinance 3749, which provided fair housing protections to the citizens of Lawrence and predated the passage of the federal fair housing ordinance by almost a year. The purpose of this oral history project, sponsored by the City of Lawrence to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the ordinance, is to document and capture the memories, roles and issues surrounding the passage of Ordinance 3749.

In May 1961 the Lawrence City Commission established an interracial Lawrence Human Relations Commission (LHRC) to “further amicable [race] relations” and “investigate…practices of discrimination” within the city. Separately, in 1964 various community organizations, including the NAACP and church groups, formed the Lawrence Fair Housing Coordinating Committee (LFHCC). Working together, the LHRC and the LFHCC submitted a proposed fair housing ordinance to the Lawrence City Commission in April 1967 seeking to address discriminatory practices in the sale and rental of homes in the city that effectively perpetuated patterns of racial segregation. Although strongly opposed by the Lawrence Real Estate Board representing local agents, the Fair Housing Ordinance passed the city commission on July 18, 1967. As its stated purpose the ordinance aimed “to provide for the general welfare of the citizens of Lawrence by declaring discriminatory practices in the rental, leasing, sale, financing or showing and advertising of dwelling units, commercial units or real property to be against public policy, and to provide for enforcement thereof.”

Approval of Lawrence’s Fair Housing Ordinance predated the signing of the Federal Fair Housing Act by nine months and preceded passage of the Kansas Fair Housing Act by nearly three years. This landmark piece of civic legislation, promoted by a diverse group of concerned residents of a university town that viewed itself as an example of American values to outsiders, including foreign students, and aspired to embody the ideals of its Free-State legacy, addressed discriminatory practices in housing, providing means for victims to seek redress and imposing penalties on violators. The origins, development and importance of this citizen-inspired movement warrants examination and interpretation as the city approaches the 50th anniversary of the passage of the Fair Housing Ordinance of 1967. 

Interviews for this project were conducted by Thomas Arnold in the summer and fall of 2016.

Publisher

City of Lawrence (Lawrence, Kan.)

Date

2016

Relation

Click here to access the audio recordings of the interviews in this collection.

A selection of the interviews were also recorded on video. Click here to access the video recordings of the interviews in this collection.

Items in the City of Lawrence Fair Housing Ordinance 50th Anniversary Oral History Project Collection

Interview of Robert Casad
Oral history interview with Dr. Robert Casad, who was a law professor at the University of Kansas in the 1960s and who was involved in drafting the Fair Housing Ordinance that passed into law in Lawrence, Kansas in July 1967. This interview was…

Interview of Gerald Cooley
Oral history interview with Gerald Cooley, who was the assistant city attorney for the City of Lawrence at the time the fair housing ordinance was passed in Lawrence in July 1967. This interview was conducted by Tom Arnold on October 12, 2016, as…

Interview of Ronald Dalquest and Donald Dalquest
Oral history interview with Ronald and Donald Dalquest, twin brothers who were both police officers with the Lawrence Police Department at the time that Lawrence's fair housing ordinance was passed in July 1967. This interview was conducted by Tom…

Interview of Homer Floyd
Oral history interview with Homer Floyd, who was the director of the Kansas State Commission on Civil Rights at the time that Lawrence's fair housing ordinance was passed in July 1967. Mr. Floyd had also been student athlete at the University of…

Interview of Honorable Fred N. Six
Oral history interview with Fred N. Six, who was the secretary of the Lawrence Human Relations Commission at the time that Lawrence's fair housing ordinance was passed in July 1967. This interview was conducted by Tom Arnold on October 6, 2016, as…

Interview of Dorothy Harvey
Oral history interview with Dorothy Harvey, who was serving as the president of the United Church Women of Lawrence at the time that Lawrence's fair housing ordinance was passed in July 1967. This interview was conducted by Tom Arnold on November 11,…

Interview of Jesse Milan
Oral history interview with Jesse Milan, who was a teacher in the Lawrence public schools and the president of the Lawrence chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) at the time that Lawrence's fair housing…

Interview of Richard Raney
Oral history interview with Richard Raney, who was the mayor of Lawrence at the time the city's fair housing ordinance was passed in July 1967. This interview was conducted by Tom Arnold on October 19, 2016, as part of the Lawrence Fair Housing…

Interview of Richard and Phyllis Sapp
Oral history interview with Richard and Phyllis Sapp; Richard was a faculty member at the University of Kansas, and Phyllis was involved with community organizations such as the League of Women Voters at the time that Lawrence's fair housing…

Interview of Richard and Barbara Dulin<br /><br />
Oral history interview with Richard and Barbara Dulin and their daughter Elaine Dulin Clyatt; Reverend Richard Dulin was the chairman of the Lawrence Fair Housing Coordinating Committee at the time that Lawrence's fair housing ordinance was passed in…

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